Louis Tourville baptized 6 October 1844

Louis Tourville was born 30 September, and baptized 6 October 1844 at St-Hughes, Bagot, Quebec.  The father was absent from the baptism, and the godparents were Eustache Girard and Louise Corriveau.  He was the ninth of ten children of Charles Tourville, farm laborer, and Sophia Arpajou. 

Although I haven’t found a death record for Sophia, she most likely died between 1846 when her son Joseph was born, and 1850.  Charles Tourville was counted in the census in Chateaugay, NY.  Sophia was not with him, just the youngest four children – Marie-Édesse (her name may have become Edith), Julia, Louis, and Joseph.  Charles was a laborer, and the family lived with Anthony and Catherine LaCount, farmers. 

In 1860, Louis lived in Vergennes, VT.  He was a servant in the household of George W Grandy, an attorney.  The Grandys seemed to be pretty well off, as he was the largest land-owner listed on that census page. 

During the Civil War, Louis enlisted in Company F, 2nd Regiment, Vermont Infantry.  His record says that he was wounded, but survived the war and held the rank of corporal when he mustered out. 

Colonel Amasa S Tracy wrote the regimental history, excerpts follow:  The Second Regiment Vermont Volunteer Infantry was organized at Burlington, and was mustered into the United States service on June 20, 1861, it being the first three years’ regiment raised in Vermont. It was composed of ten companies, selected from about sixty which offered their services for this organization. On Sunday, July 21, 1861, it took part in the battle of Bull Run. After the defeat of the Union Army, the regiment returned to its old camp at Bush Hill. The loss of the regiment in this fight was as follows: Two men killed, one officer and 34 enlisted men wounded, and one officer and 30 men missing, making a total loss of 68 men. General Howard always spoke in the highest terms of praise of the Second.

August 12, the regiment was detached from Howard’s brigade and ordered to Chain Bridge, some ten miles above Georgetown on the Potomac, and went into camp at the east end of the bridge, being brigaded with the Third Vermont, the Sixth Maine and the Thirty-third New York regiments. September 3, it was moved across the bridge into Virginia once more, and about a mile from the bridge went into camp, (Camp Advance). Here the regiment, together with the Third Vermont and Sixth Maine, built Forts Marcy and Ethan Allen. During the winter of 1861-2, the regiment did picket duty along the Leesburgh turnpike, varied occasionally with a little skirmishing with the enemy. During the month of September, the Fourth and Fifth Vermont regiments had arrived, and the famous “Old Vermont Brigade” was formed. The Brigade had moved about three miles farther out in the direction of Lewinsville, where the Sixth Vermont was added to it, the whole being under command of Gen. W. F. (Baldy) Smith. It was a regiment in which all the officers in the Division and Corps had confidence. In a fight it would obey orders if within the limits of the possible so to do.

March 10, 1862, the regiment moved from Camp Griffin, where it had remained during the winter doing picket duty and drilling, and took up the line of march to Centerville. On the arrival of the army at that place, only “quaker guns” frowned upon us, and a change of base was decided upon and the army moved to Alexandria. The regiment went into camp on the same grounds it had occupied while under General Howard, before the battle of Bull Run, but only for a few days. March 23, together with the other regiments of the Brigade, it took transports at Alexandria for Fortress Monroe. On the 24th, they landed near the Fortress and moved out to Newport News on the James River.

April 2, 1862, the regiment moved with the army up the peninsula, taking part in the fights at Young’s Mills, Lee’s Mills and Williamsburg, beside some skirmishing with the enemy. April 13, it reached White House Landing, where the famous Sixth Corps was formed, and the Vermont Brigade was assigned to the Second Division as the Second Brigade, and retained that place during the remaining three years of the war. Leaving White House Landing May 19, the regiment reached the Chickahominy River about the 22d. June 5, with the rest of the Sixth Corps, it crossed the Chickahominy and went into camp on Golding’s Farm until the 25th. On the evening of that day, after the fighting was over, the army commenced its retreat, and the Second did its share of the fighting during the Seven Days’ fight. Again a change of base was decided upon, and August 22 the regiment took transports at Fortress Monroe and steamed up the Potomac to Alexandria.

For reasons best known to the higher officers, the Sixth Corps, at the Second Battle of Bull Run, did not reach the enemy till the evening of the last day of the fighting, and was soon ordered back to Chantilly. General McClellan had previously been relieved by General Pope, Pope had been defeated and Lee’s army was in Maryland. Now Pope was superceded by McClellan, and then came the campaign in Maryland and the fights at Crampton Pass and Antietam. At Crampton Pass the Second Regiment charged the heights to the left of the road, and carried its colors to and over the crest, brushing away the rebel line as though it had been a cobweb. It was on the skirmish line at the battle of Antietam, when Lee’s army withdrew from that bloody field. It fought at the first battle of Fredericksburg under Burnside, deploying as skirmishers under a furious storm of shot and shell. It repulsed the charge of a rebel brigade and held the ground all day, being withdrawn after dark. It fought in May, 1863, at the second battle of Fredericksburg under General Hooker, and carried the heights to the South of Fredericksburg in a manner that won the enthusiastic praise of those who saw the charge from the heights on the North side of the river. The next day it fought at Bank’s Ford, and with the balance of the Corps for a time fought the great body of General Lee’s whole army and held it in check until the Union Army had crossed the river

On the 14th of August, 1863, the regiment went to New York, as it was expected there would be rioting in that city, remaining there until September 13, when it, with the other regiments of the Brigade, rejoined the Sixth Corps. During the winter of 1863-64 it took part in several reconnoissances with very little fighting. May 4, the regiment, with the army, crossed the Rapidan, and on the 5th, the first day of the terrible Wilderness fight, both Colonel Stone and Lieutenant-Colonel Tyler fell, one dead, and the other mortally wounded. The regiment was with the army in all of Grant’s campaign. It sustained almost irreparable loss by the death of Colonels

Stone and Tyler, but the Second was one of those regiments that could fight with or without officers. Five captains and five lieutenants were either killed or wounded, and one, Lieutenant Carroll, captured. It fought at Spottsylvania at the “Bloody Angle,” and at Cold Harbor. June 17, It had its share of fighting and skirmishing during the month of June, in front of Petersburg. July 10, it proceeded with the Sixth Corps to Washington to defend that city against the rebel army under Maj.-Gen. Jubal A. Early. It formed a part of General Sheridan’s army of the Shenandoah Valley and fought at Charlestown Va., Winchester and Fisher’s Hill. At Cedar Creek, October 19, the Second, with the other regiments of the Vermont Brigade, fought until all the other organizations of the army had been driven back, and fell back in good order and formed the nucleus for the rest of the army to rally around. It took part on that day in the final charge that crushed Early’s army.

In December, the Sixth Corps was withdrawn from the Valley and again joined General Grant’s army in front of Petersburg. March 25, it participated in the charge on the enemy’s entrenched picket line, which was captured. It was with the Brigade in leading the charge that broke the enemy’s lines at Petersburg. With the army, it followed Lee’s retreating forces, was at the battle of Sailor’s Creek, and on the evening of April 6, while skirmishing with the rebel rear guard, fired the last shot of the Sixth Corps at the enemy. June 8, the regiment took part in the Review by the President. July 15, it was mustered out of the United States service, and proceeded to Burlington Vt., where it was discharged, July 25, 1865, having served four years, one month, five days. The total enrollment of the regiment was 1,858. Of these, 224 were killed or died of wounds, 175 by disease, accidents and in prison, making the total number of deaths from all causes 399. This number only includes those who died while in the service, while many more died soon after their discharge on account of wounds or disease contracted while in the service. Only 23 regiments out of a total of over 2,000 lost more men killed than the Second, and in the battle of the Wilderness, May 5 and 6, its loss was the heaviest of any regiment engaged, being 348 out of an effective force of 700 men, and in one week its loss was 56 per cent of its effective force. No regiment stands higher as a fighting regiment than the Second Vermont Volunteer Infantry.

Although not described in the above history, another source says that this group was at Gettysburg.

On about September 1865, Louis married Mathilda Sequin.  I have not been able to find that specific record, or other information about Mathilda.  Her last name is from the baptism of the first daughter, Marie-Joanna (Jenny) who was born in 1865 in Chateaugay.  The records for Saint Patrick’s do not list any more children for Louis, but other posted trees list Lizzie born in 1868 and died 19 August 1869 in Grand Haven, Ottowa County, Michigan, Clarissa born 23 Dec 1869 (she married Edward Palmer in 1886), and possibly George born in 1872, but not seen in the 1880 census.

 I have not yet been able to find Louis in the 1870 census.  If Clarissa was born in Grand Haven in 1869, they should be in or near that town.  In 1880, Louis and Matilda lived in Grand Haven, and Louis ran a livery stable.  This record tells us that Matilda reported that she was born in Vermont, probably about 1847, and that per parents were both born in Pennsylvania.  Jennie and Claussy were the only children in the household.  Two boarders, Samuel Swarts, a carpet weaver, and Laban Swarts, probably his son and a lumberman, boarded with the Tourvilles. 

 An 1883 list of Civil War pensioners on the rolls from Ottawa County lists Louis Tourville.            

 The Muskegon city directory for 1887 lists a Louis D Tourville, molder, boarding at 257 South Terrace.  Other family members are not named so I’m not sure if this is the same person.  The June 1890 Veteran’s schedule lists Louis De Tourville at Minneapolis, MN, age 46.  This is the right age to be the same person.  His enlistment and discharge years also match.  However, this record says the soldier had the rank of Private, and served in the US NY Cavalry.  The 1891 Minneapolis directory lists a Louis Tourville age 47. 

In 1900, Louis is in Grand Haven, Michigan.  Mathilda is not with him, and he lists himself as widowed.  He worked as a servant in the household of Charles Lingren, who was a hotel keeper on Water Street.    

About 1905, Louis moved back to Chateaugay, and in 1910 was living with his nephew Albert Tourville, and family.  Albert was the son of Louis’ oldest brother Charles.  Also in the household were Cora Gerue, and Julia Tourville, widow of Charles.        

Louis died 27 March 1912.  Obituary:  Louis Tourville, who has been ill for some time at the home of his nephew, Albert Tourville, died on Wednesday. The deceased had made his home in Michigan for several years, returning to Chateaugay some three or four years ago. He was a veteran of the Civil War and a member of Admiral T. Bailey Post, G.A.R. Funeral services will be held at St. Patrick’s church this (Friday) morning.


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